07 SES 03 B, Inclusion of Diversity
The presentation will focus on the theoretical discussion and preliminary findings of an ongoing research about friendship in socially diverse schools, which are new elements compared to my last-year presentation.
Either by immigration waves or socioeconomic segregation, social diversity and cohesion have become notable subjects of concern globally. Drawing on the case of Chile, my study wonders how can democratic XXI century countries respond to increasing levels of social diversity and promote social cohesion. Specifically, I focus on the educational system and the possibilities for socially diverse school environments to promote the development of inclusive dispositions towards the ethnic or social other.
The paper discusses literature around school mix (the school’s social diversity) and school mixing (the interactions between students/parents from different backgrounds), and their possible relationship with the development of inclusive attitudes. Studies discussing the possible effects of school mix on democratic learning argue that both inclusive and exclusionary dispositions may emerge depending on the form heterogeneity takes, particularly depending on whether there is school mixing (e.g. Neal & Vincent, 2013; Reay et al., 2011; Wilson, 2011; Vincent & Ball, 2006).
In general, studies show that parents tend to choose schools where their populations have similar background than theirs, for example in socioeconomic or ethnic terms (e.g. Flores & Carrasco, 2013; Van Zanten, 2003; Saporito & Lareau, 1999; Ball, 1993). However, research has also identified some middle-class families valuing social diversity in the school (e.g. Reay et al., 2007; Vowden, 2012; Boterman, 2013; Vincent et al., 2015, 2016), in order to immerse their children in the experience of difference and promote their ability to engage with different people. Nevertheless, even in these cases of school mix, research has found that mixing and friendship are unusual.
My study seeks to add evidence to this mostly European body of research posing the following questions:
a) How are the family dispositions towards school mix and school mixing in a socially diverse school in Chile?
b) What are the school and family processes shaping families´ dispositions towards school mix and school mixing?
I propose to analyse the dispositions towards otherness through Pierre Bourdieu’s concept of habitus or dispositions (Bourdieu, 1984, 1990), that is, subjective schemes of doing, thinking and feeling at the basis of people´s practices. Dispositions have some regularity since the habitus defines limits to what is possible to perceive, to think and to do. These limits are the limits of the habitus´ historic and socially situated production, namely one´s past experiences. Such experiences, particularly the early ones, restrict unpredictable behaviour innovations. In this framework, the families´ dispositions towards school mix and mixing have to be analysed in relation with the families´ social position and past experiences, as well as with their experiences in other areas of their life. Additionally, considering Wendy Bottero´s (2009, 2010) interpretation of the concept of habitus, I understand that dispositions are the result of intersubjective negotiations and, as such, they can change. In spite of the importance of early experiences -which are highly restricted to the intimate social environment of the family-, dispositions continue being shaped by every social experience with other never totally identical people. Thus shifts in social connections, particularly with more socially heterogeneous individuals, may lead to disruptions of habitus, meaning ambiguities and ambivalences that foster reflexivity and a critical distance from one´s own situation, which ultimately may promote changes in habitus. In this framework, the analysis of the families´ dispositions towards school mix and mixing has to consider the intersubjective negotiations involved in the interactions amongst people from different backgrounds, as well as in their narratives about the desirable and undesirable ´other´.
Ball, S. (1993). What Is Policy ? Texts , Tra Jectories and Toolboxes. Discourse : Studies in the Cultural Politics of Education, 13(2), 10–17. http://doi.org/10.1080/0159630930130203 Boterman, W. R. (2013). Dealing with Diversity: Middle-class Family Households and the Issue of “Black” and “White” Schools in Amsterdam. Urban Studies, 50(6), 1130–1147. http://doi.org/10.1177/0042098012461673 Bottero, W. (2009). Relationality and social interaction. British Journal of Sociology, 60(2), 399–420. http://doi.org/10.1111/j.1468-4446.2009.01236.x Bottero, W. (2010). Intersubjectivity and Bourdieusian Approaches to “Identity.” Cultural Sociology, 4(1), 3–22. http://doi.org/10.1177/1749975509356750 Bourdieu, P. (1984). Distinction: A Social Critique of the Judgment of Taste. London: Routledge and Kegan Paul. Bourdieu, P. (1990). The logic of practice. Cambridge MA: Polity Press. Retrieved from https://monoskop.org/images/8/88/Bourdieu_Pierre_The_Logic_of_Practice_1990.pdf Flores, C., & Carrasco, A. (2013). Preferencias, libertad de, 2013. Neal, S., & Vincent, C. (2013). Multiculture, middle class competencies and friendship practices in super-diverse geographies. Social & Cultural Geography, 14(8), 909–929. http://doi.org/10.1080/14649365.2013.837191 OECD. (2011). Education at a Glance 2011. OECD indicators. Education. http://doi.org/10.1787/eag-2011-en Reay, D. (2007). “Unruly Places”: Inner-city Comprehensives, Middle-class Imaginaries and Working-class Children. Urban Studies, 44(7), 1191–1201. http://doi.org/10.1080/00420980701302965 Reay, D., Crozier, G., & James, D. (2011). White Middle-Class Identities and Urban Schooling. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. Saporito, S., & Lareau, A. (1999). School Selection as a Process: The Multiple Dimensions of Race in Framing Educational. Social Problems, 46(3), 418–439. Retrieved from http://www.jstor.org/stable/3097108 Vincent, C., & Ball, S. (2006). Childcare, Choice and Class Practices: Middle Class Parents and their Children. Abingdon: Routledge. Vincent, C., Neal, S., & Iqbal, H. (2015). Transitioning schools: school friendship, diversity and the middle classes. Paper presented at the European Conference on Educational Research, Budapest. Vincent, C., Neal, S., & Iqbal, H. (2016). Encounters with diversity: Childrens friendships and parental responses. Urban Studies, 53, 1–16. http://doi.org/10.1177/0042098016634610 Vowden, K. J. (2012). Safety in numbers? Middle-class parents and social mix in London primary schools. Journal of Education Policy, 0939(August 2015), 1–15. http://doi.org/10.1080/02680939.2012.664286 Wilson, H. (2012). Multi-Ethnic Schooling and the Future of Multiculturalism in the UK. In S. Garner & S. Kavak (Eds.), Workshop Proceedings: Debating Multiculturalism 2 (pp. 259–272). London: Dialogue Society. Retrieved from http://www.dialoguesociety.org/publications/debating-multiculturalism-2.pdf Zanten, A. Van. (2003). Middle-class Parents and Social Mix in French Urban Schools: reproduction and transformation of class relations in education. International Studies in Sociology of Education, 13(2), 107–124. Retrieved from http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/pdf/10.1080/09620210300200106
00. Central Events (Keynotes, EERA-Panel, EERJ Round Table, Invited Sessions)
Network 1. Continuing Professional Development: Learning for Individuals, Leaders, and Organisations
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